The Worth of a Man

Considering worth, there seems to be two types: There is a worth of things regarding use, that is, a tool’s usefulness and worth are the same, and there is a worth intrinsic, such as beauty. The question is whether man has worth in some use or possesses the inalienable quality sometimes called worth. If the first, then man’s worth would appear relative, and if the later, objective.

If man’s worth is in some accomplishment or work, measured in how well he can perform, the question arises: What is man about, that is, what is he to do? (What is he when his doing is done?) And if man’s worth is intrinsic, then what type of intrinsic worth? A landscape’s worth is beauty. One could say it expresses beauty, that it itself has no worth outside of that beauty, but here I think a point needs to be made.

The imagined landscape so far considered is the language expressing beauty, but is also beautiful: It cannot at once be the expression of beauty and not be beautiful, not possess inalienable worth.

Back to the question of man’s worth: If intrinsic, there still remains the type of worth. Truth and beauty seem the only ground upon which some worth may become inalienable. These qualities need make no argument, need no support.

Does man express anything of worth, is he beautiful or true? If not, then he is merely a cog which turns a hideous machine.

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